Go to HHH home page.
Smart Politics
 


November 2008


Minnesota Is Not Massachusetts: How Norm Coleman (Probably) Survived the Democratic Wave

As we approach a month since Election Day, many DFLers continue to lament that if Norm Coleman should hold onto his US Senate seat after the statewide recount, it is not because Coleman won the race, but because the DFL lost it – specifically, by nominating a ‘weak’ and controversial...

Smart Politics to Live Blog Conference on MN Redistricting

On Monday morning Smart Politics will live blog a conference on redistricting reform in Minnesota at the Humphrey Institute. Toward More Open Government: A Conference on Reforming the Redistricting Process Monday, December 1, 2008 8:30am - 12:00pm Humphrey Forum Hubert H. Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs From the Institute's Center...

Coleman Victory Would Be the Greatest GOP Senate Triumph in Minnesota History

Earlier this month Smart Politics examined how a victory by Norm Coleman would mark the first time since 1940 that a Republican has been elected Senator from the Gopher State in a presidential election year in which a Democrat was sent to the White House. That study examined the Coleman...

MN Senate Recount: Challenges in Franken Territory On the Rise

While the number of challenged ballots has been increasing in the Minnesota U.S. recount during the past week, the rise has not been uniform across the state’s partisan geographic divide. Smart Politics studied the change in challenged ballots in counties that had completed their recounts between the end of Thursday,...

Minnesota Unemployment Trend Worst In 22 Years

The October 2008 unemployment numbers released late last week by Dan McElroy, commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development, reveals the Gopher State is enduring its worst jobless trend in more than two decades. October’s 6.0 percent seasonally adjusted unemployment rate marks the second time out of...

CSPG Report: Potential for Change in the Senate Recount

The Center for the Study of Politics and Governance released a report this week which puts into perspective what seemed like large changes in the vote count for Al Franken between the end of Election Day to just before the recount. From the CSPG report: A study of the change...

MN Senate Recount: Challenged Ballot Rate Identical in Coleman and Franken Counties

The U.S. Senate ballot recount has been completed in 36 of Minnesota’s 87 counties, according to the Secretary of State’s website as of 8:00 pm Thursday evening. A Smart Politics study of those counties in which 100% of the ballots have been recounted finds an astonishingly similar rate of challenged...

Coleman Victory Would Renew Minnesota Tradition of Split-Ticket Voting

If Norm Coleman is able to hold onto his narrow lead against Al Franken in the 2008 U.S. Senate recount that began on Wednesday, he would accomplish a feat that has not been seen in Minnesota since before World War II: no Republican since 1940 has been elected Senator from...

Smart Politics On WCCO-TV's "Good Question": Obama and His Blackberry

Smart Politics' Eric Ostermeier was interviewed by the always-affable Jason DeRusha for his "Good Question" segment on WCCO-TV Tuesday evening. The "Good Question" at issue was, "Why Can't the President Use E-Mail" - in light of Barack Obama's recent announcement that he would be giving up his Blackberry when he...

MN Senate Election Analysis, Part 2: Norm Coleman’s Metro Slide

On Monday, Smart Politics examined the margin of victory and loss in each county between the DFL candidates in the 2006 gubernatorial and 2008 U.S. Senate races, and found Al Franken most severely underperformed in the Northern counties of the Gopher State vis-à-vis Mike Hatch. Today, in the second part...

MN Senate Election Analysis, Part 1: Franken Underperforms in Northern Minnesota

On the surface, there are several similarities between the 2008 U.S. Senate race and the 2006 gubernatorial race in Minnesota. · Both races featured 1-term Republican incumbents facing reelection in Democratic wave election years and, pending a change of fate in the U.S. Senate recount, Republicans emerged victorious in each...

Iowa Democrats Enjoying Historic Run in House of Representatives

For the first time in modern Hawkeye State political history, Iowa Democrats have made gains in the State House of Representatives in four consecutive elections. Smart Politics examined Iowa election returns for more than fifty years dating back to the mid-1950s, and neither the Democratic nor Republican parties had ever...

Democratic Control in Wisconsin At Greatest Level in a Generation

With its takeover of the State Assembly last week, Democrats now control both legislative chambers and the governor’s office in the Badger State for the first time since the 1984 election. Wisconsin Democrats were able to accomplish in 2008 what Republicans have done only one time since the 1968 election...

Even At 42 Percent, Coleman's Performance Historically Strong

Should Republican Norm Coleman prevail in the U.S. Senate recount against DFLer Al Franken over the coming weeks, his reelection will be noteworthy in several respects. First, at 42.0 percent, Coleman will have been elected by the lowest percentage in Minnesota in nearly 80 years and the second lowest in...

Will Pawlenty Run For A Third Term?

After flirting with national office in 2008 – as a purported finalist on John McCain’s short list of Vice-Presidential nominees – Tim Pawlenty has the luxury of governing a state in which gubernatorial elections are conducted in presidential off-year cycles. Governor Pawlenty has stated that he is not going...

Inside Obama's Landslide: The Young Man Went West

Barack Obama’s near landslide victory over John McCain last week was impressive on a number of dimensions. Most obviously, Obama picked up 9 states that went Republican in the 2004 election: Colorado, Florida, Indiana, Iowa, North Carolina, New Mexico, Nevada, Ohio, and Virginia. Less evident, but equally impressive, is that...

How Will the National Media Cover the Franken vs. Coleman Recount?

As the headline of Barack Obama’s historic victory begins to fade and political reporters and analysts need to turn their attention elsewhere, it is likely the recount in Minnesota's U.S. Senate race will satisfy their cravings and subsequently garner even more national attention. To date, due to its understandably Obama-centric...

Green Party Sets Personal Best in Minnesota's HD 61B Contest

In Minnesota’s House District 61B election on Tuesday, Green Party candidate Farheen Hakeem received 30.3 percent of the vote – the highest mark ever reached by the Green Party in a House contest. The Green Party has run 29 candidates for the House of Representatives in special and general...

Third Party Impact on the 2008 Minnesota Legislative Vote

Third party candidates in the Gopher State made a slight comeback in 2008, and had some impact on Minnesota legislative races on Tuesday. Two races were decidedly impacted by third party candidacies. In the open DFL House District 51A, Republican Tim Sanders defeated DFL candidate Shawn Hamilton by a 47.8...

Independence Party Sets New Records in Election 2008

Although the number of candidates the Independence Party of Minnesota has been able to field in state legislative elections has fallen sharply during the past few election cycles, the Party enjoyed some personal bests in the 2008 elections. At the top of the ticket, in the U.S. Senate race, the...

House DFLers Head Into 2010 With Favorable Electoral Map

Despite failing to net five seats and reach a 90-seat supermajority in the House of Representatives, the DFL is actually now in a much stronger position heading into 2010 than they were heading into Tuesday’s election. Perhaps more important than netting two additional seats, the DFL deepened their support in...

Wisconsin Votes Democratic By Larger Margin Than Minnesota for First Time in 72 Years

Barack Obama’s sweep through most of the Midwest on Tuesday night was perhaps most notable for his victory in Indiana. But there were other historical oddities with Obama’s victory that occurred in the region, one of which was that, for the first time since 1936, a Democratic presidential nominee had...

DFL Fails to Win Supermajority in Minnesota House

As projected at Smart Politics , the Republican Party successfully prevented the DFL from reaching a supermajority of 90 seats in the Minnesota House of Representatives. Smart Politics projected a net gain of 3 seats for a total of 88 for the DFL; unofficial returns from the Secretary of State’s...

Democrats Take Control of Wisconsin Assembly

As projected at Smart Politics on Monday, the Democratic Party has taken back control of the Wisconsin Assembly, for the first time since 1992. Democrats appear to have picked up five seats (with 1st term Democrat Kim Hixon’s defense of his 43rd District still not called): Districts 2, 42, 57,...

Election Night Observations

9:20 p.m. There have not been any shockers on Election Night so far, but there have been a few surprises on the presidential race: 1. Ohio being called so quickly for Barack Obama (about 90 minutes after polls closed) and North Dakota being called so quickly for John McCain (the...

Upper Midwestern Election Results Links

To track updated state and federal election results for the Upper Midwest, visit these links: Iowa: Secretary of State Minnesota: Secretary of State South Dakota: Secretary of State Wisconsin: Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel...

Smart Politics Projections: U.S. House Races

Smart Politics’ final set in its series of national and Upper Midwestern federal and state electoral projections is the balance of power in the U.S. House. Smart Politics Projections: The U.S. House Even before the financial crisis hit the U.S. two months ago, Democrats were poised to pick-up several...

Smart Politics Projections: Minnesota State House (2008)

Through the morning of November 4th, Smart Politics is running a series of electoral projections for national and Upper Midwestern federal and state governmental contests. The thirteenth projections in the series are State House races in the State of Minnesota. Minnesota: State House. Balance of power: DFL (85 to 49)...

Smart Politics Projections: The Presidency

Through the morning of November 4th, Smart Politics is running a series of electoral projections for national and Upper Midwestern federal and state governmental contests. The twelfth set of projections in the series is for the Presidency. Smart Politics Projections: The Presidency Barack Obama’s attempt to capture Republican states like...

Smart Politics Projections: U.S. Senate Races

Through the morning of November 4th, Smart Politics is running a series of electoral projections for national and Upper Midwestern federal and state governmental contests. The eleventh projections in the series are U.S. Senate races nationwide. Smart Politics Projections: U.S. Senate Races Democratic Victories (+7) Alaska (pick-up) Arkansas Colorado (pick-up)...

Smart Politics Projections: Federal Races in Minnesota

Through the morning of November 4th, Smart Politics is running a series of electoral projections for Upper Midwestern federal and state governmental contests. The tenth projections in the series are federal races in the State of Minnesota. Minnesota: President. Barack Obama has trailed John McCain only once in 40 non-partisan...

Smart Politics Projections: South Dakota House (2008)

Through the morning of November 4th, Smart Politics is running a series of electoral projections for Upper Midwestern federal and state governmental contests. The ninth projections in the series are State House races in the State of South Dakota. South Dakota: State House. Balance of power: Republicans (50 to 20)...

Smart Politics Projections: South Dakota Senate (2008)

Through November 3rd, Smart Politics will be running a series of electoral projections for Upper Midwestern federal and state governmental contests. The eighth projections in the series are State Senate races in the State of South Dakota. South Dakota: State Senate. Balance of power: Republicans (20 to 15) 2006 Results:...

Smart Politics Projections: Wisconsin State Assembly (2008)

Through November 3rd, Smart Politics will be running a series of electoral projections for Upper Midwestern federal and state governmental contests. The seventh projections in the series are State Assembly races in the State of Wisconsin. Wisconsin: State Assembly. Balance of power: Republicans (51 to 47; 1 independent) 2006 Results:...

Smart Politics Projections: Wisconsin State Senate (2008)

Through November 3rd, Smart Politics will be running a series of electoral projections for Upper Midwestern federal and state governmental contests. The sixth projections in the series are State Senate races in the State of Wisconsin. Wisconsin: State Senate. Balance of power: Democrats (17 to 14; 2 vacancies) 2006 Results:...

Smart Politics Projections: Iowa State House (2008)

Through November 3rd, Smart Politics will be running a series of electoral projections for Upper Midwestern federal and state governmental contests. The fifth projections in the series are State House races in the State of Iowa. Iowa: State House. Balance of power: Democrats (53 to 47) 2006 Results: Democrats +5...

Smart Politics Projections: Iowa State Senate (2008)

Through November 3rd, Smart Politics will be running a series of electoral projections for Upper Midwestern federal and state governmental contests. The fourth projections in the series are State Senate races in the State of Iowa. Iowa: State Senate. Balance of power: Democrats (30 to 20) 2006 Results: Democrats, net...

Smart Politics ‘Post-Election Preview’

On the eve of Election Day, Smart Politics would like to thank its growing audience for making this blog your home for non-partisan analysis of Upper Midwestern politics. Throughout this campaign season our readership has mushroomed, and our coverage of Upper Midwestern politics will only intensify after November 4th. In...

Smart Politics Projections: Federal Races in Wisconsin

Through November 3rd, Smart Politics will be running a series of electoral projections for Upper Midwestern federal and state governmental contests. The third projections in the series are federal races in the State of Wisconsin. Wisconsin: President. John McCain has not led in a non-partisan public poll in Wisconsin since...

Smart Politics Projections: Federal Races in South Dakota

Through November 3rd, Smart Politics will be running a series of electoral projections for Upper Midwestern federal and state governmental contests. The second projections in the series are federal races in the State of South Dakota. South Dakota: President. Democrats have carried South Dakota just three times (in 1932, 1936,...

Smart Politics Projections: Federal Races in Iowa

Through November 3rd, Smart Politics will be running a series of electoral projections for Upper Midwestern federal and state governmental contests. The first projections in the series are federal races in the State of Iowa. Iowa: President. Barack Obama has never trailed John McCain in three-dozen non-partisan polls taken of...